Applications now open for startup awards 

  • 7 May 2024

Applications are now open until 31 August for the second edition of the Startup Ecosystem Stars (SES) Award Ceremony set to take place on 4 December 2024 in Paris.

Co-organized by ICC and Mind the Bridge (MTB), in collaboration with the OECD and the European Commission, and with support from Microsoft, the SES Awards recognise excellence among organisations fostering innovation in their ecosystems in addition to showcasing success stories, promoting collaboration and stimulating opportunities for innovation ecosystem growth. 

Innovation ecosystems play a pivotal and vital role in supporting entrepreneurship and advancing global goals. We at ICC believe that demonstrating leadership within these ecosystems not only enables businesses to thrive but also drives more opportunities built on a shared purpose for a brighter future for all.

Candace Johnson, ICC Executive Board Member, Vice-Chair of the ICC Policy Committee and Chair of the Awards Jury .  

Last year, former EU Commissioner Mariya Gabriel received special recognition as “Person of the Year”, acknowledging her significant contribution in fostering innovative ecosystems in Europe and beyond. In addition, 15 regions and cities across four categories from 10 countries and five continents were recognised as “Startup Ecosystem Stars”. 

The SES Awards are built upon a decade-long research and experience in tracking and benchmarking innovation ecosystems worldwide. This initiative uses the MiTB ‘Innovation Ecosystem Life Cycle Model’ to make international comparisons, estimate growth trajectories, and highlight factors behind different growth paces,”

said Alberto Onetti and Marco Marinucci, respectively Chairman and CEO of Mind the Bridge.  

The SES Awards follow an open call application process, targeting programmes and initiatives able to boost the development of innovation ecosystems. Candidate organisations can be public or private organisations, or agencies representing cities, regions, countries, or supranational entities that have a direct impact on their respective innovation ecosystems. 

To be eligible, organisations and agencies are required to run excellent programmes in one of the following five categories: Best-in-class Startup Programs, Outstanding Investment Boost, Visionary Public Procurement, Top Talent and Research, and Exceptional Industry Support. 

Initiatives are evaluated based on criteria such as programme novelty, impact and efficacy. 

A distinguished jury, led by Candace Johnson, Serial Entrepreneur and ICC Executive Board member, evaluates applications. 

Winning organisations will be invited to attend the official Award Ceremony event at ICC Global Headquarters in Paris in December.  

Submit your application.